Governor Augustus Jaspert and Premier Dr D Orlando Smith said persons who fail to heed an advice for them to ‘consider’ leaving Anegada will be left at severe risk without immediately available help, adding that residents of other vulnerable areas and structures should also relocate.
“Residents of low-lying coastal communities and other vulnerable areas and structures should consider moving to an emergency shelter or with friends and family members located in safer or stronger structures.”
“We know this might be a difficult decision for some of you to make, but we cannot take any chances based on the hurricane forecast,” the governor and premier said in a joint statement shortly before mid-day.
The British Virgin Islands (BVI) is among Caribbean countries expected to be hit by the category 5 hurricane, which is travelling with sustained winds of near 175 miles per hour. It continues to strengthen as it approaches the territory, the government said.
Storm surge will also impact coastal communities, and so persons should move further inland.
“Individuals living in high elevations must also take extra precautionary measures to secure their windows and doors as we could experience extremely strong winds. Consider moving to an area of lower elevation, but away from areas with a possibility of landslides and flooding,” said Governor Jaspert and Premier Smith
They, in the joint statement late this morning, further explained: “The island of Anegada is low-lying, and destructive storm surge of 10 to 14 feet is possible. Residents are strongly urged to move to Virgin Gorda or Tortola with friends and family or to the designated emergency shelters. We will provide transportation to do this. The last ferry is scheduled to leave Anegada at 12 noon for Tortola and Virgin Gorda.”
“This is your final opportunity to make a decision to move to a safer location. Those residents who do not leave the island will be at severe risk. Emergency response public servants will not be on the island to assist immediately,” added the governor and premier.
Less than 24 hours before their joint statement, the leaders told residents to ‘consider’ leaving Anegada.
They also announced yesterday that travel arrangements had been made, and that emergency shelters are available.
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